Where Penn State ranks in ESPN’s first FPI rankings for 2024

Coming off a 10-3 season in 2023 and with high hopes in the new era of college football, Penn State continues to draw some national respect in the preseason polls and rankings. Already labeled a preseason top-10 team by Athlon Sports, the Nittany Lions are now receiving a top-10 ranking from ESPN’s own metric, the Football Power Index (or the FPI for short). ESPN updated its FPI for the 2024 college football season this weekend, and Penn State is looking to start the season with a top-10 ranking.

ESPN ranks Penn State at no. 6 in its updated FPI rankings for 2024. Despite the lofty ranking, Penn State is still the third-highest-ranked team in the Big Ten. Newcomer Oregon is no. 2 in the FPI rankings and popular preseason Big Ten favorite Ohio State is ranked no. 4.

The top team in ESPN’s FPI rankings is Georgia, of the SEC. Incoming SEC member Texas is ranked no. 3 between Oregon and Ohio State, and Alabama comes in at no. 5 between the Buckeyes and Nittany Lions. Defending Big Ten and national champion Michigan is ranked no. 12 as the next highest-ranked Big Ten team after Penn State.

According to ESPN’s FPI projections, Penn State is expected to win 10 games this season (10.1 is the official mathematical prediction of ESPN’s FPI metric). Penn State has a 7.1% chance of going undefeated and a 99.1% chance of meeting the bowl eligibility minimum of six wins. ESPN’s FPI predicts Penn State has a 22.2% chance of winning the Big Ten and a 59.1% chance of making the new 12-team College Football Playoff bracket.

When it comes to winning it all, something Penn State has not officially been recognized for doing since beating Miami in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl, the FPI gives Penn State a 13.3% chance of reaching the national championship game and a 6.6% chance of winning the national championship.

So you’re telling me there’s a chance.

You can see ESPN’s full FPI rankings to see where other schools rank in the preseason FPI ratings.

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Story originally appeared on Nittany Lions Wire